The healing benefits of cacao are well known among its native home, South America. With cacao growing in popularity for its nutritional benefits, we wanted to take a closer look…
It is thought that regular consumption of cacao can improve memory, boost immunity, help you lose weight, reduce heart disease and increase energy levels.
Studies suggest cacao contains four times the amount of antioxidants than in regular, supermarket bought dark chocolate, over 100 times more than bananas and 20 times more than in blueberries. The high antioxidant content is thought to make cacao an effective way to fight cancer causing free radicals, as well as helping to increase immunity and preventing the risk of disease.
Cacao contains anandamide, known as the mood booster or the “bliss molecule”. While believed to be the chemical responsible for the feeling of utopia, cacao can also kick-start the release of pleasurable chemicals and endorphins, making it an aphrodisiac and an effective remedy for easing symptoms of PMS.
Researchers believe cacao protects the body in different ways, thanks to its complex, rich sources of antioxidants and chemicals.
Some other common health benefits of cacao include:
- Cacao is proven to prevent blood clots through thinning the blood.
- It is thought to prevent premature aging.
- Thought to help promote shiny, strong hair and nails.
- Cacao has the ability to improve kidney health and promote regular bowels.
Cacao is thought to be especially healing when eaten raw, although it is now available in powder form and can be added to many food recipes. It is also believed to have spiritual properties, creating a stronger connection with light, our higher level of consciousness and with our creative ability to write, paint and dance.
Cacao powder and nibs are now readily available in most supermarkets or health food outlets. If you want to try introducing cacao into your daily life and embrace the health benefits, add it into your breakfast porridge, smoothies or bakes.